They'Re a Rotten Crowd…You'Re Worth the Whole Damn Bunch Put Together

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There is no doubt that Gatsby is "worth the whole damn bunch put together." Although he is naïve and obsessed, he also has a dream that he prepared to fight for, integrity to his friends and it is these qualities together with Gatsby's inherent concern for others that make him morally superior to the "rotten crowd" – particularly the Buchanans, Jordan Baker and Myrtle. To decide whether Gatsby is better than the other characters it will be necessary to analyse the characters and to compare and contrast them to Gatsby.

It is important, when analysing the characters of The Great Gatsby to realise that it is a novel written through Nick's eyes. We must realise that we get much of nick's hypotheses, speculation, imagination and he can suppress, recast, and fantasise. We are responding to what Nick has made of the events.

Daisy and Tom Buchanan embody a morally duplicitous, aimless, dreamless and drifting existence. Nick writes of them that "they had spent a year in France for no particular reason, and then drifted here and there unrestfully wherever people played polo and were rich together." They represent all that is wrong with the American Dream; they are rich, but they have no true friends, they are unhappy, restless. Whenever they are in trouble, they have the money and the lack of morality to just move on: "they were careless people, Tom and Daisy – they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or vast carelessness." The Buchanans can also be interpreted as a general archetype of the East Coast American upper class, like when Daisy cries "What will we do with ourselves this afternoon? And the day after that, and the next thirty years?" There are many things to do with their money, influence and experience; however they just choose to take the ‘easier' way out and seek constant, instant pleasure. Gatsby is a direct contrast to The Buchanans. He has a dream, a purpose that he will fight fiercely for. A perfect example of...
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